The Asclepios project is a program of analogue missions designed by students for students, under the mentorship of trained professionals. This interdisciplinary project unites students and scientists from all around the globe to achieve a common goal: successfully perform “do-it-yourself” space missions. It seeks to simulate short-term space missions on another celestial body, such as the Moon or Mars, thus paving the way to the future space exploration of our solar system.
Analog astronauts
International students

Space@yourService (S@yS) is a non-profit organization recognized by EPFL which aims at promoting and popularizing space sciences (astrophysics, space engineering, astronomy, etc.). S@yS, in collaboration with national and international scientific institutions, as well as the industry, is working at the cutting edge of space promotion with the development of innovating means of communication (outreach events, SciComm escape game, school programs). In 2019, S@yS decided to launch the Asclepios analogue missions to contribute to the world of space exploration and encourage the potential space explorers of tomorrow.

You can download the association’s status by clicking here.

The Asclepios missions are human-sized analogue space missions which are opened only to students with the goal of arousing their interest in future space endeavors as astronauts, space engineers or members of the Mission Control Center.  It is for this reason that one of the project’s main objectives is Education, which is carried out in collaboration with project partners in terms of workshops and analogue mission training, and by the EPFL Space center as part of semester projects. In addition, the platform allows numerous laboratories across the world to test prototypes and the development of experiments useful for the exploration of the Moon or Mars, making Scientific Research the second goal of Asclepios. Finally, as part of S@yS commitments, Communication, i.e., educating and inspiring young generations, through engaging media appearances, remains one of the key aspect of the project.


Pr. Claude Nicollier

Claude Nicollier is a former ESA astronaut and is currently a professor at EPFL. He is a member of the Swiss Space Center and participated in the astronaut selection process at ESA. Claude is the mentor of the Asclepios astronaut team.

Pr. Bernard Foing

Prof. Bernard Foing is a French scientist at the European Space Agency (ESA) and the executive director of the International Lunar Exploration Working Group (ILEWG). Through ESA, he provides supervision and equipment to the Asclepios Missions, as well as mentorship and advice to the teams.

Alban Michon

A real fan of the polar regions and deep-sea diving, Alban Michon is a French adventurer and explorer who has gone on some exceptional expeditions. In 2012, he travelled 1,000km in a sea kayak along the Greenland coast, and went diving under the icebergs there. He is the mentor for the training of our future astronauts. 

Ingo Blechschmidt

Dr. Ingo Blechschmidt is Head of the Nagra’s Grimsel Test Site (GTS), the underground laboratory where our lunar base for Asclepios I is built. He is a geologist and beside his responsibility for the GTS, he represents Nagra in international organizations such as the IAEA network for underground research facilities (URF) for the management of radioactive waste in deep geological repositories. 
Ingo and his team are helping us enormously with the construction and layout of our lunar base, guiding us in the technical and safety aspects of our base, and will be there in case of any concerns during the mission.

Julia Schmale

Julia Schmale is assistant professor at EPFL, Switzerland, where she heads the Extreme Environments Research Laboratory (EERL) since 2019. Her research focuses on how the ocean, land, cryosphere and human activities influence the chemical and microphysical composition of the atmosphere, and the resulting effects on climate and air quality. Her main study regions are the Arctic, Antarctica, Southern Ocean and high altitudes. Currently Julia represents Switzerland in the international steering group of the MOSAiC expedition, and she is a lead author on the forthcoming report by the Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme’s expert group on short-lived climate forcers.
Prof. Schmale is Asclepios’ supervisor for the MAKE initiative. With Andrea Baccarini, she supervises all the semester projects offered in Asclepios and mentors us in the management of the team.

Emmanuelle David

Emmanuelle David is the executive manager of the EPFL Space Center (eSpace), an interdisciplinary hub, working with students, academic institutions, international space agencies and industry partners, with an overall mission to promote space related research and education at EPFL. Emmanuelle and her team are the supervisor of our student association Space@yourService, and provide us with guidance for the management of such a challenging project and the coordination of this many stakeholders.